Lunges are a great exercise for improving your balance when your knees are bent and you’re close to the ground. Performing them regularly can help protect you from falls by improving your balance in awkward positions.
- 1 chair
- Place the chair to the left of your body and slightly in front of you. Stand up straight with your feet a hip distance apart and your left hand on the chair.
- Take a big step forward with your left foot while keeping your left hand on the chair.
- Bend your knees and slowly lower your body down until your front knee is at a 90 degree angle, making sure that it does not go over your ankle.
- Slowly raise your body back up to the starting position.
- Repeat steps 3-4 for as many repetitions as you desire.
- Step backwards with your left foot and then turn around, so that the chair is now to the right of your body and slightly in front of you. Then place your right hand on the chair, take a big step forward with your right foot and repeat steps 3-4 for as many repetitions as you desire.
Why Are Lunges So Great For Seniors?
Performing lunges with a chair makes this exercise much safer than a regular lunge and gives you something to grab onto if you do lose your balance. As well as building your balance, lunges are also a low impact leg exercise and a great way to lightly tone and strengthen your legs without injuring yourself. Finally, lunges keep your knees flexible and supple which helps to offset age related joint stiffness and pain.
When you’ve got used to lunging and you need something extra to make it more challenging, try these lunge variations:
- Take your hand off the chair and perform the lunges with no extra support.
- Grab a balance disk or a BOSU ball and place your front foot on it when lunging for an even greater balance challenge.
- Hold a dumbbell in each hand as you perform the lunges to strengthen your legs at the same time as improving your balance.